Stelco Signs MoU with Primobius to Construct a Plant for Recycling of Li-Ion Battery Metals

The goal is recovering lithium, nickel, cobalt and other materials from expended lithium-ion batteries in North America.

Primobius GmbH is a 50:50 joint venture company owned by Australian Neometals Ltd., and German-based SMS group ( to commercialize an environmentally friendly recycling solution for end-of-life and scrap lithium-ion battery (LiB) cells. The company has recently signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Canadian Stelco Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of steel manufacturer Stelco Holdings Inc.

Stelco is pursuing initiatives with major automobile producers to recycle end-of-life automobiles in order to recover valuable materials for re-use or re-sale. “Recycling the lithium-ion batteries contained in electric vehicle automobiles is a major aspect within this value chain, which will become even more important in the future,” SMS group gave account. The Canadian firm was looking to partner with a party with lithium-ion battery capabilities to establish a battery recycling business in North America as part of its broader automobile recycling pursuits. The Primobius recycling process would offer large-scale sustainable recycling “that can drastically reduce the CO2 footprint of vehicle and cell makers”.

The MoU would provide a framework towards establishing a 50:50 incorporated lithium-ion battery recycling joint venture in North America. It is planned that Primobius is going to supply a dedicated recycling facility (processing capacity: 20,000 tons/year) adjacent to Stelco’s proposed vehicle recycling operation, run by the joint venture partners with equal contribution of capital costs and sharing of financial returns. As reported, the facility will be modeled on its proprietary refining process following the successful completion of the demonstration trials at its showcase facility. The company’s demonstration plant is currently being assembled in a dedicated warehouse at the SMS group manufacturing center in Hilchenbach, Germany.

(Published in GLOBAL RECYCLING Magazine 2/2021, Page 28, Photo: SMS group)